Education reform continues to be a question of grave concern for educators and policy makers. Braithwaite’s (2002) novel To Sir With Love which was set in the 1960s informs that education reform is nothing new…
Education reform continues to be a question of grave concern for educators and policy makers. Braithwaite’s (2002) novel To Sir With Love which was set in the 1960s informs that education reform is nothing new. Students are particularly vulnerable to failure both at school and after school. Braithwaite’s (2002) novel cautions that students are resistant to traditional teaching methods and require training which goes beyond mere academic learning. In today’s world, President Barak Obama cautions a student body that regardless of what career choices they make, they will require some level of computer literacy (Obama 2011). Essentially, we are learning that education reform places a greater degree of pressure on teachers as they attempt to improve teaching techniques and outcomes. As it is, educators and policy-makers are concerned about the high drop-out rate among high school students across the US (Obama 2011). In other words, keeping students engaged becomes more challenging when teachers are required to integrate technology into the curriculum. On the other hand, integrating technology into the curriculum can be one method of responding to the drop-out rate. Research studies reveal that academic performance and being held back are not the only contributing factors to the school drop-out rate. In fact, these studies also reveal that a student’s attitude toward school student’s experience at also contributes to the school drop-out rate (Lamb 2011, p. 370)....
As Lamb (2011) informs, research studies indicate that students are at a greater risk of dropping out of school when their academic performance is poor. It therefore follows that non-conventional teaching can improve engagement and as such can improve retention. Arguably, engagement is tied to academic performance. This explains why there is so much emphasis on education reform and the significance of quality teaching. Braithwaite’s (2002) teacher did not have the science and technology at his disposal to introduce innovative and non-conventional methods of teaching. He was forced to be creative and by doing so engaged his East London students who were by no stretch of the imagination, conventional students. The result was, these children’s attitudes toward school changed and the students were for the most part successful. Bennett (2011) reveals the extent to which teaching occupies the minds of policy-makers. This is a result of the poor academic outcomes. According to Bennett (2011), the National Assessment of Educational Progress revealed that 40 percent of American high school seniors scored 36 percent below average in math and 26 percent below average in reading. The results for American history are even more disappointing with high school seniors scoring over 50 percent below average (Bennett 2011). Bennett (2011) explains that while these poor outcomes can be accounted for by a number of issues, one thing is certain: quality teaching can turn this around. This brings us to the question of technology in the classroom. Technology has the potential to improve teaching by bringing into the classroom a significant part of the student’s daily life and future job prospects. Therefore technology in ...
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